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Are You a Twitter Spammer?

Barrage of @s

Recently one of the organizations that we work with had their account suspended on Twitter. The situation looked something like this. The organization started tweeting about a video/petition. No biggie, right? Well, they started to tweet at people (putting the @username at the beginning of the tweet). A lot. And not just anyone. Celebrities, big names, people with large follower counts…

Bam. Account: Suspended

Twitter can’t monitor the content of individual tweets and therefore they can’t tell if accounts are pushing out petitions and happy things or evil viruses and sad things. This means that accounts that are acting like spammers but pushing out good stuff are still spammers.

Twitter says that they “usually suspend accounts posting multiple unsolicited @replies that contain the same links.” For a complete list of posting activity that will get you labeled as Spam or Abusive, check out this link:

The Twitter Rules

Too late? Here’s a help article explaining how to appeal a suspension:

My Account’s Been Suspended

Remember that in the world of the internet, spam can simply mean you’re bothering someone. Make sure that you focus on value to your Twitter followers and remember that it’s a give a take relationship. No one likes a moocher…

Are YOU a Twitter Spammer? ::Law & Order Music::



  • http://twitter.com/peterscampbell Peter Campbell

    Sounds like they were spamming to me. I regularly drop NPOs — no matter how worthy their missions — that DM or @ me with appeals and generic content.  I’m on Twitter to converse and share with my community, not to sift through the canned mail.

  • http://blog.socialsourcecommons.org/ Matt Garcia

    Definitely. @s have quickly become the new spam. Well, I guess “new” is relative… I wonder if there are many larger organizations or celebrities who respond to requests from strangers. I could see some being valuable and innocent while the canned, generic asks sent out ad naseum being the real meat-in-a-can.

  • Amanda

    I’m with Peter. I got here via @mattgarcia:disqus’s tweet: http://twitter.com/aspirationtech/statuses/111893627390799872

    And called it a trick question because I’ve gotten great results using an @ message as advocacy, but I think we’re talking about different things.

    I’m sure the @ storm is a great way to get at least a few people to open a URL. Which is why so many spammer’s do it. I think that Twitter is a great place to get a conversation going, but if you can’t generate a meaningful conversation, you’re not actually improving over plain old email blasts.

    I’ve gotten airlines to fix a botched ticket with a tweet addressed to them. I’ve weighed in on broken infrastructure or shoddy coverage of breaking news with @ replies, but they’re authentic conversations.

  • http://blog.socialsourcecommons.org/ Matt Garcia

    Related news of the day: 

    Anonymous releasing Twitter Tool to hijack trending topics:

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-27080_3-20103679-245/anonymous-group-releases-new-twitter-tool/

  • Pingback: Engaging Network Hubs on Social Media | Social Source Commons Blog

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